At Canberra this week for a car launch (because quite frankly the only reason you’d go to the Aussie capital is for work), we were instructed that the speed limit by schools is 40km/h.
Not just during school drop-off and pick-up times — the restrictions are in place between 8am and 4pm with infringement notices or cautions handed out to offending drivers.
It’s an interesting initiative, even more so when the ACT Government wants to drop that speed to 30km/h as part of a new set of initiatives to improve road safety around schools.
South Australia’s school zones have limits of 25 km/h in their school zones.
Other Australian states have limited speed zones between set hours: 7-9am and 2-4pm.
ACT is also trialling zig-zag road markings, known as dragon’s teeth, to make school zones clearer to drivers.
“What we’ve seen is that the school signs are often unseen if you’re in an unfamiliar area, but if you’re driving on a road with markings, there’s no excuse — you will see that,” said ACT’s Minister for Education and Police, Joy Burch.
I reckon we should follow the Aussies’ lead and not only drop the speed limit in school zones permanently to 30km/h or 25km/h in New Zealand, but reiterate the speed restrictions with very clear road markings.
I drive through three school zones on one of my workday commute routes and, despite the flashing signs to signify the lower speed, other drivers speed through the area.
Come on, it’s not a pain, it’s only for a limited time and in an limited area. What’s more important, getting to work, or our kids?